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Indy Reads Staff Picks

Some recommendations from your favorite nonprofit independent bookstore. These are not just great books, but books that are enhanced by the audio experience.

Playlist Tags: Indy Reads bookstore-created topic: favorites

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The Little Prince

By Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Narrated by: Linda Watson
Length: 53 minutes

In order to provide English learners with extensive reading pleasure, it consists of jewels that span the East and West, from literary works of famous writers such as Aesop's fables, Andersen, Shakespeare, and picture brothers to traditional fairy tales from all over the world. Read more »

Audiobook details

The City We Became

A Novel
The Great Cities Trilogy: Book #1

By N. K. Jemisin
Narrated by: Robin Miles
Length: 16 hours 12 minutes

The City We Became

“I love N.K. Jemisin’s books, I love New York City, and I love this book about the soul and personification of New York. The City We Became might just be my favorite book to be published in 2020. This story is filled with tension, humor, and great characters, with a guest appearance near and dear to me. While this book is the beginning of a trilogy, it is completely satisfying as a stand-alone novel. Read it and be happy.”

Powell's Books image Doug Chase, Powell's Books
Audiobook details

Leah on the Offbeat

By Becky Albertalli
Narrated by: Shannon Purser
Length: 7 hours 5 minutes

#1 New York Times bestseller! Goodreads Choice Award for the best young adult novel of the year!

In this sequel to the acclaimed Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda—now a major motion picture, Love, Simon—we follow Simon’s BFF Leah as she grapples with changing friendships, first love, and senior year angst.

When it comes to drumming, Leah Burke is...

Read more »

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I Am Number Four

Lorien Legacies

By Pittacus Lore
Narrated by: Neil Kaplan
Length: 11 hours 24 minutes

The first book of the #1 New York Times bestselling series and the inspiration for the hit movie from Dreamworks!

John Smith seems like an ordinary teenager, living a normal life with his guardian Henri in Paradise, Ohio. But for John, keeping a low profile is essential, because he is not an ordinary teenager. He’s an alien from the planet...

Read more »

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You Should See Me in a Crown

By Leah Johnson
Narrated by: Alaska Jackson
Length: 7 hours 18 minutes

You Should See Me in a Crown

“Here is the novel that will restore your faith in humanity in spades. In Campbell, Indiana, being crowned prom royalty is the ultimate recognition. And this year Liz Lighty needs to win that crown because it happens to be attached to an academic scholarship she desperately needs. The cards are stacked against her: she struggles with anxiety, poverty and grief, all while being queer and Black in a staunchly traditional white culture. Alaska Jackson's narration infuses these fresh voices with nuance and vitality. Liz Lighty's journey to finding her voice and claiming her power in a midwestern town that has historically never made space for 'outliers' is a jubilant one that we are so lucky take alongside her.”

Bear Pond Books image Jane, Bear Pond Books
Audiobook details

Gideon the Ninth

Locked Tomb: Book #1

By Tamsyn Muir
Narrated by: Moira Quirk
Length: 16 hours 49 minutes

Gideon the Ninth

“This is everything I wanted in a book and more. Gideon is likable but flawed, Harrow is horrible and unforgettable, and the prose occasionally turns hauntingly beautiful. The narration helps make a complex world become real and the characters friends you may or may not want to invite over to dinner. It depends on whether your folks are there.”

Page 158 Books image Jenny, Page 158 Books
Audiobook details

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

By Becky Albertalli
Narrated by: Michael Crouch
Length: 6 hours 45 minutes

Now a major motion picture from Twentieth Century Fox: Love, Simon

William C. Morris Award Winner: Best Young Adult Debut of the Year * National Book Award Longlist

"A remarkable gift of a novel."—Andrew Smith, author of Grasshopper Jungle

"I am so in love with this book."—Nina LaCour, author of Hold Still

"Feels timelessly, effortlessly now."—Tim...

Read more »

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The Beautiful Ones

By Prince
Narrated by: Esperanza Spalding, Adepero Oduye & Dan Piepenbring
Length: 3 hours 4 minutes

The brilliant coming-of-age-and-into-superstardom story of one of the greatest artists of all time, in his own words—featuring the exquisite memoir he began writing before his tragic death

Prince was a musical genius, one of the most beloved, accomplished, and acclaimed musicians of our time. He was a startlingly original visionary with an... Read more »

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Citizen

An American Lyric

By Claudia Rankine
Narrated by: Allyson Johnson
Length: 1 hours 37 minutes

Claudia Rankine's bold new book recounts mounting racial aggressions in ongoing encounters in twenty-first-century daily life and in the media. Some of these encounters are slights, seeming slips of the tongue, and some are intentional offensives in the classroom, at the supermarket, at home, on the tennis court with Serena Williams and the... Read more »

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She Would Be King

A Novel

By Wayétu Moore
Narrated by: Wayétu Moore
Length: 9 hours 38 minutes

She Would Be King

“It’s hard to describe a novel as wholly original as She Would Be King. A retelling of the birth of Liberia through interconnected stories, the novel combines history, magic, and myth in one engrossing story. Moore’s novel takes you from West Africa to the plantations of Virginia, from Jamaica to Liberia, weaving together the stories of three characters who yearn for power and true freedom. Guided by the ancient wind, all of Moore’s characters challenge and transcend the many faces of oppression, and the story’s profound culmination will leave you in awe. She Would Be King is the kind of novel that lingers with you for days. A must-read!”

Raven Book Store image Morgan McComb, Raven Book Store
Audiobook details

The Goldfinch

A Novel (Pulitzer Prize for Fiction)

By Donna Tartt
Narrated by: David Pittu
Length: 32 hours 24 minutes

The Goldfinch

“The Goldfinch was always one of those books I was intimidated to start. It's so long! And sprawling! Was I really going to commit to thirty hours of a book about a painting? The answer is: I waited much too long to get to this truly incredible story, and if you--like me--are daunted by this book's length and scope, the audiobook is for you. Read by veteran stage actor David Pittu (and award winning audiobook narrator), I was rapt from the opening scene to the very last. The story follows Theo Decker from the day he loses his mother in a terrorist attack inside New York City's Metropolitan Museum of Art through the rest of his youth. Theo is bounced through households, adrift without his mother, from the Upper East Side apartment of a wealthy schoolmate to his father's Las Vegas subdivision, always accompanied by the small, precious painting he took from the museum on the fateful day his mother died. It's an incredible coming of age tale, read by Pittu with humor and perfect dramatic timing. Despite the many hours I spent with this audiobook, I was sad when it was over. It is just that good.”

Books Are Magic image Liv, Books Are Magic
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The Library Book

By Susan Orlean
Narrated by: Susan Orlean
Length: 12 hours 8 minutes

The Library Book

“On the day I turned 2, Chernobyl was struck by disaster. Three days later, hidden among the news and chaos, the Los Angeles Public Library was in flames. Two thousand degrees, more than a million books destroyed or damaged, and the source of the fire unknown. Susan Orlean centers her book on the fire and then moves outward to include librarians past and present, the role of a library in a community, and our own relationships with books. Like Orlean’s other books, there is some crime, some travelling, fascinating people, and an amazing tangle of details. ”

Bookshop Santa Cruz image Rachel, Bookshop Santa Cruz
Audiobook details